February Newsletter

Congressional Border Deal

For a brief moment earlier this month, it appeared that Congress may finally take action on border policy. Republican Senator James Lankford emerged as the lead Republican negotiator on a sweeping piece of legislation that promised to gain the support of both Democrats and Republicans. After weeks of negotiations, Lankford announced that he was ready to bring the bill to a vote.This, however, is where the problems began. House Republicans, at the urging of former President Trump, immediately came out against the bill. Speaker Mike Johnson declared the bill dead on arrival in the House. Senate Republicans soon followed, with several members of Republican leadership coming out against the legislation. Many speculated that internal GOP circles were concerned that progress on the border would give President Biden the opportunity to take credit for a long-awaited policy win.

Last week, these issues came to bear when the Senate was unable to pass the bill due to large Republican opposition. This vote puts months of negotiations to the side with little agreement on where to go next on border security.

Secretary Myorkas Impeachment

The House, on their second attempt, followed through on a long-time promise to impeach Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas for his failure to secure the southern border. The vote was razor thin, failing on the first ballot thanks to three Republican defections before barely passing on the second attempt due to multiple Democratic absences. By law, the process now moves to the Senate, where an impeachment trial would be in order.’The Senate, however, is in no rush to hear the case against Mayorkas. Senate Democrats see the move to impeach the Secretary as nothing but political grandstanding, especially following Republican’s failure to support the bipartisan border bill. Leader Schumer has multiple options on how to proceed with these Articles of Impeachment, including options that avoid an immediate Senate trial. Recent reports indicate that Schumer is exploring options to kill the articles, including sending them to a committee or dismissing the articles altogether.

New England Delegation Activities

Our New England Members have been hard at work this month on a variety of priorities helping constituents from Maine to Connecticut. Here are some of the important highlights that could impact your business and ongoing projects.

Senator Susan Collins

A long-time supporter of or updating Maine’s transportation infrastructure, the Senator helped to secure $18 million in government funding to help update the terminals at three Maine airports, including the Portland Jetport.

Congressman Jared Golden

The Congressman continued his support for small business this month when the House Committee on Small Business unanimously advanced a bill cosponsored by Congressman Golden.

Congresswoman Annie Kuster

Earlier this month, Congresswoman Kuster held a roundtable with New Hampshire families and child care providers to discuss the importance of expanding the Child Tax Credit.

Senator Ed Markey

Senator Markey led members of the Massachusetts delegation to call on the Department of Labor to track the employment data of nonprofit workers more closely.

Congressman Jim McGovern

Following the recent flooding in Leominster, the Congressman was a leader in calling on FEMA to send disaster relief funds to the community. Earlier this week, the Congressman released a statement blasting FEMA for denying the disaster aid.

Senator Maggie Hassan

A long-time supporter of reducing prescription drug prices for New Hampshire residents, the Senator recently pressed the leaders of several major pharmaceutical companies during a Senate HELP Committee hearing on what can be done to bring down prices.

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse

The Senator led a bipartisan group of his colleagues in introducing a bill to address substance abuse in federal prisons across the country.

The Earmark Process

Have you ever considered a Congressionally Directed Spending (Earmark) request to fund your organization? We can help you determine if this is a good option for you! Earmarks have recently been reintroduced to the budget process, and we can help you secure a piece of this government funding. Earmarking allows Members of Congress to authorize direct federal funding to local projects that make communities better.

Senator Collins will have a key role in this process for FY 2024 through her position on the Appropriations Committee. More information on the Senator’s funding process can be found here.